Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The Truth Can Be Such A Tricky Thing

I'm not going to address his comments concerning Michael J Fox, as Mr. Fox is more than capable to defend himself, and Rush Limbaugh has apologized for the comments. I'll concentrate instead on the substance within the comments. Here's what Rush said about the Illinois Constitutional Amendment 2:

"All stem cell research is legal today in Missouri. Jim Talent does not seek to criminalize it, as Michael J. Fox asserts in his television commercial. The truth is that Amendment 2 would put human cloning in the Missouri Constitution. Michael J. Fox is participating in this disinformation campaign."

What the Illinois Amendment 2 says:

2006 Ballot Measure
Constitutional Amendment 2
Stem Cell Initiative

Submitted October 11, 2005

NOTICE: You are advised that the proposed constitutional amendment may change, repeal, or modify by implication or may be construed by some persons to change, repeal or modify by implication, the following provisions of the Constitution of Missouri – Sections 2, 10, 14, and 32 of Article I; Section 1 of Article II; Sections 1, 21, 22, 23, 28, 36, 39, 40, 41, and 42 of Article III; Sections 1, 14, 36(a), 37, 37(a), 39, and 52 of Article IV; Sections 5, 14, 17, 18, and 23, and subsection 17 of Section 27 of Article V; Sections 18(b), 18(c), 18(d), 18(k), 18(m), 19(a), 20, 31, 32(a), and 32(b) of Article VI; Section 9(a) of Article IX; Sections 1, 6, 11(a), 11(d), and 11(f) of Article X; and Section 3 or Article XI.

Be it resolved by the people of the state of Missouri that the Constitution be amended:

One new section is adopted by adding one new section to be known as section 38(d) of Article III to read as follows:

Section 38(d). 1. This section shall be known as the “ Missouri Stem Cell Research and Cures Initiative.”

2. To ensure that Missouri patients have access to stem cell therapies and cures, that Missouri researchers can conduct stem cell research in the state, and that all such research is conducted safely and ethically, any stem cell research permitted under federal law may be conducted in Missouri, and any stem cell therapies and cures permitted under federal law may be provided to patients in Missouri, subject to the requirements of federal law and only the following additional limitations and requirements:

(1) No person may clone or attempt to clone a human being.

OK. Rush is not lying in that statement, he's just horrifically misleading. The amendment DOES put cloning in the constitution... by BANNING IT!

PS. He's on right now, and he JUST NOW flat out lied. He just said that the amendment does not deal with stem cell research at all, that it is an attempt to legalize cloning.

Again from the bill: 2.(1) No person may clone or attempt to clone a human being.

PPS. I just realized why Rush is so upset over this amendment. He has no offspring to carry on his legacy. The amendment bans cloning. If this trend catches on, there will be no way for Rush to continue running his empire forever, and his brand of conservatism will die with him.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Pornography in the News... Literaly !!!

From an article running on the MSNBC news site: Federal prosecutors and the FBI in Connecticut are investigating whether a high-ranking staff member at one of the country's most venerable Anglican churches possessed child pornography, sources tell NBC News.

Isn't it funny that the very people who were sooo up in arms about the evils of pornograghy, religious conservatives / republicans, and passed all these stiff laws against it, are the ones who keep getting caught?

So you gotta let me know, da da,da. Da Da Da, Should I stay or should I go....

... or "What's it all about, Alfie???"

My blog cohort and friend Citizen Deux is questioning his place in the blog world, and whether he still has the drive to continue on the adventure that is blogging. What are my thoughts on the subject of blog retirement?

When playing in a band becomes more chore and less fun, I will put the bass in a closet, take a sabatical, and walk away from playing music for a while. I must admit I have thought about doing the same thing for my blog too. Some times it feels like a big waste of time. But then I think, how much time does it really take out of my day to write a post; I mean the thing that eats my spare time is visiting everyone elses blogs. So if I cut back on anything, it will be surfing through all the other sites.

I could take a few weeks off from blogging - a self imposed exile. For various reasons I have gone that long between posts on a few of occations. But in the end I couldn't quit. Hell, I'ld probably end up posting more during my exile than I do now. Anyway. I have a feeling we will all have alot to blather about with the elctions two weeks away.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Updates On Stuff....

The Car is working good. No more overheating on Grapevines, no more taching 4000 RPM's at 70 mph, and no more getting a sucky 19 MPG. The crappy 3 speed automatic tranny is now sitting on my garage floor. It's lighter by 100 lbs at least, and is getting about 24 on the highway. It handles better with the Full Time 4 Wheel Drive tranny delivering power to all 4's. The acceleration is still a bit choppy at times and there's a slight knock in cylinder # 3. I may have done some damage to one of the main bearings the last time it overheated. Even so, it's quite a fun car to drive. Very perky and nimble. Can't waite to get 'er in the snow. And if the engine problems get bad, well, I'll just throw a new one in it and that will be that. Did I mention I can't waite for the snow?

The Career change is on track, if going slower than I'ld like. I'm waiting for Fresno Unified to start calling. I bought some nice slacks this weekend, so clothing wise, I am be ready to be My Sub!

Politics??? I re-registered to vote, left the sad excuse of the Republican party, and am once again a card carrying Libertarian. All I need now is the card to come in the mail.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Truer Words.......

Lets all sing the Doom Song!

David Bernstein, one of the cool lawyer bloggers at The Volokh Conspiracy, offers his thoughts on the impending expiration of the Republican majority:

Looking Forward to a Republican Defeat?:

I don't blog about partisan politics that much, mostly because it doesn't interest me that much. I must say, however, that I'm not sorry the Republicans are poised to lose the House to the Democrats. The Republicans came in under a reformist platform in '94, and gradually lost their zeal for anything but reelection. By now, I can't think of a better advertisement for term limits than the Republican majority in the House, and I don't think I'll ever forgive Anthony Kennedy for his vote in U.S. Term Limits v. Thornton (declaring state-imposed term limits for federal office-holders unconstitutional), which was not only completely wrong on the merits, but allowed the culture of corruption (K Street, earmarks, etc.) and reelection-at-all-costs to transfer itself so quickly from the Democratic majority to the Republican majority, except that, by all indications, it has gotten worse. Twelve years of Republican control of the presidency from 1981 to 1993 led to a generation of lazy Republican sycophants who were more concerned about keeping their sinecures than in achieving any principled goals they had once believed in. The shock of defeat in '92 led directly to the Gingrich revolution, undone unfortunately because Gingrich was a much better revolutionary than leader (I still can't believe how he whined to the press about the seating arrangements on the airplane on the way back from Rabin's funeral, and I've never understood how he let Clinton get away with accusing the Republicans of "shutting down the government" when the Republicans actually passed a budget that Clinton vetoed!) Defeat for the Republicans in 2006 is even more richly deserved than in '92, and hopefully, if it does come, it will lead to a the emergence of a Repbulican presidential candidate in '08 and Congressional leaders who will restore some of the reformist fervor of the early Reagan and Gingrich years.

UPDATE: I should mention that I'm very disappointed that the Democrats haven't taken the opportunity to even remotely hint that they'll behave any better than the Republicans.

When did the Republicans jump the shark? For me it was the flap over veggi-girl. Citizen Deux is bieng coy about his feelings, or maybe he never saw the fin leave the water. For Scoot, I suppose it was when they were elected into office.

"Doom Song" courtesy of Invader Zim.

PS. Do know that I am not making fun of Terri Schiavo, MSRIP.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Friday, October 13, 2006

Album Cover Wars Pt 1.

It has begun...

Note: This cover isn't involved in the skirmish, but it should be.

Hat Tip: Althouse.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Cliffie ...

HERE is one of the songs you wanted. I'll get the other song for you tomorrow.

PS. For those not in the know, Cliffie is my guitarist in RareForm. We have a couple of gigs coming up and there are a few songs we need to learn. This is one of them. HERE are a couple of songs from RareForm.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

New Blogtopus Entry!

Welcome all to the site of Bryan and Sarah!

B is the original, and best, drummer for Chris Plays Guitar. I love working with him because he has an inherent feel for the groove, a steadyness, that so many drummers these days seem to lack. Sure it's geat to have fancy chops and be able to show off a bit, but if you don't or can't stay in the groove for the entire song after throwing down some nasty hi-hat work, then what's the point. B understands the "Pocket"! Sarah, B's wonderful wife, is a hoot, smart; she is tons of fun to be around.

Anyways, thanks to the Zera's for being good people.

PS. The Chris Plays Guitar link is fixed. So go visit, and enjoy the music.

Monday, October 02, 2006

How To Rebuild a Car! UPDATE 2.0

I'll tell you when I'm done.

I will be in grease monkey mode for the day. Today I am replacing the head gaskets in Murphy, the $500 87 Subaru Turbo Wagon. While I'm getting grimey, I figured I would change the transmission from the crappy 3 speed automatic that is in the car now, to the manual 5 spees Full Time 4 Wheel Drive tranny with locking differential. The current tranny gets horrible gas mileage, and the manual will do better, plus the manual will be more fun to drive. Wish me luck!

DAY 1 - Got the heads off and the crappy 3 speed auto tranny out of the cavity. Also had to remove both 23 spline half shafts to replace with 25 spliners. I started at about 10:00 AM and stopped around 7. Took a few breaks, did lunch, and waisted some time looking for misplaced ratchet or sockets. All in all - a very productive day.

DAY 2 - The day in a nutshell. The ultimate goal - to at least get the new tranny mounted. I had some extra jobs to do today (you know the equation, work = money = more Subie parts; this is like an adiction), so I started early, 7 AM'ish. I pulled the shift lever for the automatic, then went to work for a couple of hours. During the day I went to pick up the 25 sline halfshafts. Got home and found one of the new halfshafts was a 23 spliner. Crap! That means another trip to the store. I ended up doing a lot more running around than I wanted, waisting sevaral hours. I got the crappy 3 speed auto tranny out from underneath the car. Man - that thing is heavy! I forgot to secure the torque converter, so of coarse it came off and spilled tranny fluid everywhere. Funny thing is that when I was installing it a year and a half ago, I did the same thing. At the end of the day, I got the Full Time 4 Wheel Drive tranny up into the tranny bay, plus I also cleaned the cylinder heads and prepped them for install. I couldn't get the one halfshaft to slide onto the differential stub. I fear I have the wrong one. Will try again tomorrow. I think, if I get the halfshaft issues resolved, I will tomorrow have brought Murphy back to life.

DAY 3 - Have more work today and again started early. I managed to get the halfshaft on the tranny stub. It was just a matter of finding the right angle of attack. The stck shift is installed too. I forgot how short the throw is on the shift. Thats all for now. Today I will post some video bits documenting the job.

I worked more than I thought and only had a few hours to work on Murphy. I pulled the old auto pedal assy. (which includes pulling the steering wheel of coarse) and installed the new clutchy one. But I ended up taking the new one out to check if the accel pedal was tha same as the old one. The travel distance to the floor seemed awful short. Also, I had to dissasemble my dash because I couldn't get the speedo cable from the FT4WD tranny to stay on. So it was kinda a two-steps-forward-one-step-back kinda day.